Happy Saturday! Another week has come and gone in East Lansing, with some important developments in city government.
Tuesday (Jan. 16), Reporter Dustin DuFort Petty brought us a story about the city’s new Youth Commission. The group of nine ambitious students will provide perspective on the challenges and ideas from the city’s teenage population. The group held its first meeting Jan. 8 and will elect a chair and vice chair at its next meeting.
City Desk Editor Luke Day covered this week’s discussion-only City Council meeting in a pair of stories. The meeting was part of the city’s strategic planning process and saw presentations from nine of the city’s 11 department heads.
In addition to presentations from the city clerk’s office, fire department and communications department, the first story covered public comment, where a representative from the Lansing NAACP branch spoke out against bias the branch believes led Council to elect Kerry Ebersole Singh to be mayor pro tem over Dana Watson. Watson also took time to reflect on her experiences with racism and how discrimination can take many forms.
The second story on Tuesday’s Council meeting covered presentations from Human Resources; the East Lansing Police Department; the Prime Time Seniors Program; the Department of Public Works; Planning, Building and Development; and the Parks, Recreation and Arts Department. Council reconvenes today (Jan. 20) at 9 a.m. to continue with strategic planning. Here’s the agenda for that meeting.
Also this week, Reporter Alex Maas’ coverage of last week’s Planning Commission meeting was published. At the meeting, the commission heard more feedback about a proposed rental restrictive overlay in the Glencairn neighborhood and discussed what the Master Plan Coordinating Committee will look like.
Friday (Jan. 19), Luke gave us a story about a recording of the Nov. 2 Special City Council meeting being added to the city’s YouTube channel. The meeting took place just days before the Council election, but was quietly added to the city calendar and saw key developments, including giving the city attorney settlement authority in the Country Mill Farms lawsuit and accepting independent investigator J. Randall Secontine’s findings in an investigation regarding alleged charter violations by city officials. The minutes from the special meeting still have not been approved.
Meetings and more meetings on the calendar next week.
Stick with ELi next week as we continue our meeting coverage. Tuesday (Jan. 23), City Council and the University Student Commission will each meet. Wednesday (Jan. 24), the Planning Commission will convene. There’s a packed schedule on Thursday (Jan. 25) with meetings for the Downtown Development Authority, Brownfield Redevelopment Authority, Community Development Advisory Committee and Building Board of Appeals. Meeting agendas can be found here when they are released.
There will also be an East Lansing Board of Education meeting on Monday (Jan. 22). The meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on the lower level of the high school. The agenda can be found here once it is posted.
Here is other news and happenings around East Lansing.
Drivers take note: Left turns from Lexington Avenue onto westbound Burcham Drive are now prohibited from 8-9 a.m. and 3:30-4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday due to safety concerns of residents and crossing guards for Marble Elementary School. You can read more details about the new Traffic Control Order (TCO) here.
The East Lansing Human Rights Commission (HRC) will host its next Coffee & Conversation session on Sunday (Jan. 21) from 1-3 p.m. at the Hannah Community Center. This month’s topic is “How East Lansing Can Address and Respond to the Needs of Our Unhoused Community.” See more information here.
Sometimes older, calmer pets are overlooked for adoption. The Prime Time Senior Program is partnering with Saved by Zade, Happy Feet Pet Rescue, and the Constellation Cat Cafe to host an "Old Souls, New Homes" pet adoption event 1-4 p.m. Wednesday (Jan. 24). Prime Time said on its Facebook page, “Please join us for this amazing event, and maybe meet a new fur-ever friend!”
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